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Duck Down Records Celebrates 15-Year Anniversary at CMJ

Ben Hider, Getty Images

The CMJ Marathon kicked off last night with an electric performance by classic Duck Down Records acts at New York City’s Le Poisson Rouge. The room, packed with Champion hoodies, Doc Gooden jerseys and whole lot of nostalgic people hoisting cameras in the air, harkened back to the era when there was a clear split between underground and mainstream hip-hop.

After an opening set by Team Facelift, a duo that referenced everything from Biggie to A Tribe Called Quest, things quickly turned into a variety show of epic proportions when DJ Evil Dee took over the mix. Duck Down head honcho Buckshot hit the stage to perform some of his mid ’90s hits before being joined by 9th Wonder for new material of their upcoming collaborative album entitled ‘The Solution.’

New signee Black Rob was a surprise guest wearing a cartoon-ish sock monkey beanie and leading the crowd through pump-up anthems like ‘Whoa.’ After Rob, Sean Price intimidated with his monotonous, threatening flow and gave way to a full-blown Boot Camp Clik reunion that dipped into each member’s solo tracks and some vintage hits by the group Smif-N-Wesson.

Between sets DJ Evil Dee showed that DJing is actually an art that needs a high amount of crowd participation. Rocking classics from ODB to Group Home, the crowd never hit a real lull until the smoke cleared. Ultimately, this was one of more exciting hip-hop shows of the year. A line outside the venue still wrapped down the block at 2AM following performances from Pharoahe Monch and Jean Grae.

Check out footage from Black Rob’s performance below.

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